Bobcats, also referred to as wildcats, are approximately double the size of a house cat and weigh between 11 and 30 pounds. They have short bobbed tails, which is how they get their name. Black spots or lines mark their soft tan or brown fur, and they have ruffs of fur around their faces.
Bobcats live in the United States and southern Canada in scrublands, forests, coastal swamps and deserts. Primarily nocturnal animals, they eat almost anything and can kill large prey, but they mainly eat rabbits and hares. They also dine on rodents, birds, bats and deer and farm animals, such as pigs, lambs and poultry.
Bobcats live solitary lives. They usually have one main den in a cave, rock pile or log, but they build additional dens in stumps or brush piles. Bobcats usually mate in late winter, and litters of up to eight kittens are born in the main den in early spring. The kittens learn to hunt when they are about 5 months old, and they strike out on their own when they are 8 to 11 months old. In the wild, bobcats live 12 to 13 years; in captivity, they live as long as 20 years.